Effect of Wind Flow and Solar Radiation on Functionality of Water Evaporation Suppression Monolayers

  • Ali Mozafari
  • Bozorgmehr Mansouri
  • S. Farshid ChiniEmail author


The average evaporation in Iran is 3 times higher than the world average. Applying chemical monolayers on water surfaces is one of the promising methods for suppressing the evaporation. Literature studies have shown that the mixture of cetyl and stearyl (ratio of 1 to 9) is the state-of-the-art monolayer to minimize the evaporation. Adding calcium hydroxide increases the spreading rate and self-healing of the monolayer. Despite long study and investigation on monolayers, there are inconsistencies in explaining the mechanism by which monolayers decrease the evaporation. The mechanisms used to explain the evaporation reduction are: (i) increasing the reflected solar radiation, (ii) dampening the waves formed by winds and decreasing the water surface area, consequently, and (iii) limiting the escape of water molecules. In this paper, by design of experiments (DOE), we try to answer the above question. Evaporation rate from a container in absence of wind or low wind (~0.2 m/s) and at moderate temperature and relative humidity (~20 °C and 45%) is ~ 10 mm/day. Utilization of the monolayer can save 41% of the evaporated water. Also, in absence of radiation, a 9 m/s wind caused ~ 15 mm/day evaporation. By increasing the wind speed from 0 to 9 m/s, effectiveness of the monolayer deteriorated from 60 to 13%. Therefore, the main mechanism is neither reflecting the radiation (as in absence of radiation, monolayer was still effective) nor dampening the waves and decreasing the surface area (as in absence of wind, monolayer was effective; also, at higher wind speeds where the surface area increases, monolayer efficiency decreases). Therefore, the main mechanism by which monolayers decrease the evaporation rate is limiting the escape of water molecules. So, monolayers may be effective even during the nights even though radiation is at its lowest.


Monolayer Mechanism Surface tension Evaporation suppression Fatty alcohols Water crisis 



This work has been supported by the Center for International Scientific Studies & Collaboration (CISSC) under the contract No. 1715. Authors would like to thank CISSC for their financial support.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

No potential conflict of interest was reported by the authors.


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Mechanical Engineering, College of EngineeringUniversity of TehranTehranIran

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